Calare MP Andrew Gee still backing Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce

SUPPORT: Calare MP Andrew Gee and Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce in Canberra.
SUPPORT: Calare MP Andrew Gee and Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce in Canberra.

FEDERAL Member for Calare Andrew Gee has thrown his support behind embattled Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce as pressure mounts on the Deputy Prime Minister over his relationship with a former staffer.

It was revealed last week that Mr Joyce was expecting a child with his new partner and former media adviser Vikki Campion.

But more damaging were claims Mr Joyce had helped Ms Campion land a high-paying job in the office of his Nationals colleague Matt Canavan after talk of their affair first emerged.

Media reports on Wednesday quoted former Nationals heavyweights Mark Vaile and Warren Truss as saying it was time for Mr Joyce to go, but Mr Gee disagreed.

He conceded the “matter has obviously been a topic of discussion” but said Mr Joyce still had his support and the support of the party room.

He said he had no knowledge of any push to remove Mr Joyce as leader of the Nationals.

“I haven't been approached by anyone about a challenge to Barnaby,” Mr Gee said.

“People want their representatives talking about and working on the issues affecting our country and their lives and while recent issues surrounding Barnaby have meant that not everyone has been doing that, it’s what I’m doing.”

Mr Gee would not comment on suggestions Mr Joyce’s relationship with a staffer might constitute a code of conduct breach.

“It’s the prime minister’s call as to whether there have been any breaches of the Ministerial Code Of Conduct,” he said.

“I’m only a backbencher, any questions about possible breaches of the code should be taken up with him.”